Vayikra 5751: Uniting the Miraculous with the Natural

Dvar Malchus Vayikra 5751

1-3) On rare occasions three sifrei Torah are taken out from the aron kodesh on Shabbos.  Every year on Simchas Torah, and on years when Rosh Chodesh Nissan falls on Shabbos (because it is also Parashas Hachodesh) [as it did in 5751 when this sicha was given, and also this year 5778].

Taking out three sifrei Torah on Simchas Torah (and also Rosh Chodesh Nissan) affects the entire year, even those years in which Rosh Chodesh Nissan does not fall out on Shabbos.  Taking the sefer Torah from the aron Kodesh corresponds to aron Habris that went out before the bnei Yisroel in the desert, destroying the enemies (for this reason we recite the verse “vayehi binso’a ha’aron” upon removing the sefer Torah from the aron).  This gives power for both “turn away from evil” as well as giving additional power in serving Hashem in general.

4) We have a concept, based on the words of the Shabbos musaf prayer “the Tamid offering according to its order, and the additional offerings according to their laws” (“t’midim k’sidram, u-musafim k’hilchasom“).  The concept is that there is a consistent, fixed order of things (represented by the regular daily Tamid offering) and in addition to this there are things which transcend this order (the additional musaf offering brought on Shabbos and Yom Tov).  In our case, taking out three sifrei Torah on Simchas Torah is the concept of consistency whereas the three sifrei Torah of Rosh Chodesh Nissan only occurs in a special year when it falls out on Shabbos, the concept of something additional.

Simchas Torah emphasizes Bereishis, the creation of the world as it conducts itself according to nature; Rosh Chodesh Nissan is the concept of the first mitzvah in the Torah—”this month is for you the head of the months” (“haChodesh hazeh lachem…“)—which is the miraculous conduct of the world.  Furthermore, Rosh Chodesh Nissan is termed by our Sages as the month of redemption (“chodesh haGeulah“), implying also a redemption from conduct in accordance with nature to miraculous conduct.

5) Torah and Mitzvos in general are connected with the miraculous conduct of the world, and between them there is a different emphasis.  The miraculous conduct of the month of Nissan is not (only) for serving Hashem in matters which are above the world, unlike the study of Torah which is above the world (and is the focus of Simchas Torah); rather, it is that the “miraculous conduct” should be drawn down into the and (also) permeate the matters of the world in actual deed—a mitzvah.  Only that this actual deed in the world should not be like the natural conduct of the world, but rather like miraculous conduct which is beyond the nature and regularity of the one performing the mitzvah.  [Note 43: Including also that after he becomes accustomed to this it becomes second nature.  Being that the year 5751 is the year of “I will show him wonders (nifliaos)” (adding to the miracles (nisim) of the previous year (5750))—the regular order itself is in a way of wonders (higher than regular miracles), so Rosh Chodesh Nissan that falls out on Shabbos we take out three sifrei Torah and in this way the power is provided for serving Hashem in a way that is even higher than the level of miraculous conduct.]

6) It is possible to see all of the above in the portions of the Torah which are read from these three sifrei Torah, as we shall explain.  We can contrast three distinctions which are related: the sun with the moon; the days with the months; and the concepts of consistency with renewal.  [***] Every Jew possesses an aspect of Moshe Rabbeinu, referring to the aspect of Knowledge (Da’as) which draws down the unification of the blessed Ohr Ein Sof so that it should be revealed in the soul of the Jew that his soul should be a “tent of meeting”, a place to know Hashem, to see with eyes of flesh—a sample of the perfection that will be in the Time to Come.  [Note 53: …in order that the aspect of Moshe should be revealed…requires drawing down an awakening from Above via Mitzvos.]  This is the role of the children of Aharon, the students of Aharon—that their work is in the absolute perfection of the soul’s expiration (klois hanefesh) being specifically souls in bodies[Note 58: Every Jews recites the “Birkas Cohanim” in the morning—because all of Bnei Yisroel are “the children of Aharon”.]

This is the implicit meaning and novelty (toichen v’chiddush) in Divine service in a way of “miraculous conduct”…that every single Jew will achieve what is stated at the beginning of parshas Vayikra: “He called to Moshe and Hashem spoke to him from the tent of meeting”, until the perfection of the Divine service in a way of the soul’s expiration (klois hanefesh).

Furthermore, and this is the main thing, that this addition and novelty in Divine service in a way of miraculous conduct will come to be in a way of being firmly established and eternal, like a convenant of salt—do not cease to have salt [present on the altar] the covenant of your G-d.

Represented in the three readings of Rosh Chodesh Nissan (when if falls on Shabbos) are three levels of what we have discussed above:

Parshas Hachodesh—Miraculous conduct (in general);

Shabbos Rosh Chodesh—Miraculous conduct (the concept of Rosh Chodesh) as it impacts regular conduct (the concept of Shabbos);

Vayikra—That miraculous conduct should become something regular and fixed in an everlasting way.

Furthermore, the haftorah, which speaks in the beginning and the end about the connection of all Bnei Yisroel with the Nosi (the leader).  This is a hint that the avodah of all of Bnei Yisroel is in a way of Nesius (royalty). [Note 65: Each Jew brings an offering of the Nosi via the custom whereby every Jew says the verses describing the offering of the Nosi from Rosh Chodesh Nissan.]

7) This chazaka of three sifrei Torah, miraculous conduct, also refers to transforming undesirable things to good, also mentioned in all three Torah readings on this day:

Parashas Hachodesh—refers to Nissan, spelled with two “nun”s, which stands for nisei nisim (abundant miracles), and hints at the transformation of the nun–nefila (falling)–of exile to nisei nisim (abundant miracles) of Geulah.  Eating Matzah [a mitzvah of Pesach, which is the reason for reading Parashas Hachodesh] is nullifying the yetzer hara, not only in Yerushalayim (which literally means “yira shalem”, “perfect awe”) but in all places where Jews live–”I will remove the spirit of impurity (yetzer hara) from the earth”;

Shabbos Rosh Chodesh–Atonement (kapara), also atonement for undesirable things which derive from the “diminution of the moon” which is rectified like the rectification of the diminution of the moon in the time to come–”the light of the moon will be like the light of the sun”.  This is also hinted at in Shabbos (sun) and Rosh Chodesh (moon);

Vayikra–Also about offerings and also salt, which accompanies the offerings and erases and sweetens the bitterness, a hint to pnimiyus haTorah which transforms dark to light [Zohar I 241b, Likkutei Torah Vayikra 3d].

Also in the haftorah–he [the prophet] will make the sin offering to atone for Bnei Yisroel. There is an additional verse about an undesirable thing, but we “finish with good” [in the final verse that we read].

8-9) The three sifrei Torah are connected with a Jew’s avodah in a way of miraculous conduct. There are two opinions regarding learning the halachos of Pesach: 30 days prior, and the Rashba”g says two weeks prior.  It is possible to fulfill both in actuality: start learning 30 days prior, and then add in an even loftier manner in quantity and quality two weeks before.  The reason for the Rashba”g’s opinion–Moshe stood on the mountain on Rosh Chodesh and began teaching them “this month for you is the head of the months”–giving strength and ability for miraculous conduct.

Additionally, giving generously for Pesach needs (ma’os chitin) should be in a way that is above one’s accustomed behavior.  The additional money that you give will generate more income from the Holy One, blessed be He–and therefore you have to give ten percent (or, 20 percent) from this money even before the Holy One gives it.  One should continue in this way [of giving and then giving also from the anticipated increase] until Hashem’s blessing will provide him with tremendous wealth and therefore his giving should be in an unlimited manner.  And this will also bring benefit in his Torah learning, since via tzedaka his mind and heart are refined 1000 times over. [Note 118: The tzedaka that one gives is drawn down into his labor in Torah in the aspect of “I [Hashem] am the one who is speaking”.]

10) Miraculous conduct is related to the Nosi who brought his offering on this day–Nachshon ben Aminadav.  The verse describing his offering states “for the tribe of Yehuda” and not “Nosi (of the children of) Yehuda”–not only because he is Nosi of the tribe of Yehuda, but also because of his own special qualities.–the quality of mesirus nefesh–the avoda of “with all your might”, miraculous conduct.

He is connected with Tzedaka through his name “Nadav” (meaning “generous”). Also, Nadav and Avihu (sons of Aharon)–implying that “Nadav” (generosity) is “Avi” (father) from which come all matters of avodah in a way of miraculous conduct.  Furthermore, we can say that the miraculous conduct of “the one who brings his offering on the first day…Nachshon ben Aminadav of the tribe of Yehuda” is also in the nullification and transformation of undesirable matters that via the self-sacrifice (mesirus nefesh) of Nachshon [by walking into the sea until as a result] the sea was split—meaning that the covering and concealment represented by the sea was nullified and more than this—transformed to holiness, the revelation of the hidden world in the revealed world (alma d’iskasya b’alma d’isgalya)—the perfection and completion of the Exodus from Egypt.  Similarly, Tzedaka—the expression “exchange for Tzedaka” (kofer letzadaka), where the word “kofer” (exchange) is related to “kapara” (atonement) [Note 143: until the complete perfection of atonement, as in our parsha, not atonement of his soul, but rather to atone before Hashem, to be a source of nachas ruach to his owner. (Tanya, Igeres Hatshuva 2)] That through this, all undesirable matters are nullified, until the nullification of the exile and until it is finally transformed to Geulah, the sea of exile transformed to the sea of Geulah.

11) May it be Hashem’s will that by making a good resolution to add in avodah in a way of miraculous conduct—this will speed up and bring immediately the reward of miraculous conduct from the Holy One, blessed be He, beginning with the main miracle of the true and complete Geulah. The main thing is that the Geulah should come now—parshas Vayikra, Rosh Chodesh Nissan, in the year 5751…and as we say in the Haggada, the blessing “Baruch ata Hashem ga’al Yisroel”. [Note 163: [The blessing is] in the past tense since it refers to the exodus from Egypt, but we could say that since it comes as the final seal on a blessing which speaks of the future Geulah, then it includes the future Geulah…since it [the future Geulah] already occurred in the previous moment (also in the beginning of the blessing).]


View the sicha as translated by Sichos In English:

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